Linen shirts and ties

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by wmarson, Jun 3, 2006.

  1. wmarson

    wmarson Member

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    Are linen shirts meant to be worn with a necktie (say, under a seersucker blazer)? Or, is a more traditional cotton shirt the better choice in this style situation? Thanks.
     
  2. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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    It depends on the shirt. I have a linen shirt with french cuffs that I wear with suits in the summer. Others are styled in such a way that they are sport shirts only.
     
  3. j

    j (stands for Jerk) Admin

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    Welcome to the forum.

    It's rare to find RTW linen shirts with collars that are substantial enough to support a necktie. If you do find one, go for it. Or you could have one made for you.
     
  4. Pink22m

    Pink22m Senior member

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    Robert Talbott does custom linen dress shirts with their Estate line.
     
  5. wmarson

    wmarson Member

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    Thanks for the replies and welcome. I have the following linen shirt from Brooks Brothers:

    http://www.brooksbrothers.com/IWCatP...&Parent_Id=202

    It's a button-down, but it just did not look right when I was trying to pair it with a tie. I would assume that the collar is wide enough for a tie ... correct?

    Thanks again.
     
  6. j

    j (stands for Jerk) Admin

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    Thanks for the replies and welcome. I have the following linen shirt from Brooks Brothers:

    http://www.brooksbrothers.com/IWCatP...&Parent_Id=202

    It's a button-down, but it just did not look right when I was trying to pair it with a tie. I would assume that the collar is wide enough for a tie ... correct?

    Thanks again.

    That shirt is kind of borderline. What I meant by 'substantial' is the stiffness of the collar band and collar. With that shirt, you might be able to wear a lightweight tie like a cotton knit, but it won't support a heavy silk tie. I think that one is more intended to be worn open collar and without a tie.
     
  7. VMan

    VMan Senior member

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    Some high-end shirt makers such as Kiton make linen shirts in such a fine fabric that it feels like a thicker cotton (but has the look, texture, and breathability of linen). They are very crisp, and I would imagine these would work quite well with ties.

    On the other hand, the looser and drapier linen shirts are best suited to be worn without a tie.
     
  8. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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    Note that the shirt has general sizes like Small, Medium and Large rather than, say, 16 x 34. That would lead me to think it's intended to be worn as a sports shirt. If it fits you well enough at the neck and sleeves you could probably get by with a tie, though.
     
  9. dennisdomino

    dennisdomino Well-Known Member

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    That shirt is kind of borderline. What I meant by 'substantial' is the stiffness of the collar band and collar. With that shirt, you might be able to wear a lightweight tie like a cotton knit, but it won't support a heavy silk tie. I think that one is more intended to be worn open collar and without a tie.

    wmarson, I think J's points here are the most important to consider, the collar and the weight of the tie. If the collar doesn't look right, as if it can't stand up to having a tie with it, than you aren't going to look your best. The other challenge with matching ties with linen shirts besides the weight issue is that sometimes different fabrics just don't look right against linen, especially as the shirt begins to wrinkle with wear, as it usually does quickly.
    Good luck figuring it out and let us know what you decide.
    DD
     
  10. Manton

    Manton RINO Dubiously Honored

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    A linen-cotton blend makes a fine summer dress shirt that looks and breathes like linen, but is less stiff and wears a little better. I have both 100% linen dress shirts and linen-cotton, and I much prefer the latter. I doubt I will ever get any more 100% linen.

    In general, linen should have no problem supporting a tie, assuming the shirt is cut to do so. Even handkerchief linen is stiffer than most cotton shirtings. I think both J and AlanC are correct, however, that the design of the shirt linked is not really meant for a tie, or at most a very casual knit tie.
     

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